Legal advice

If you've got a legal question, we've got answers.

Get advice before you sign a contract: There’s no cooling-off period for real estate contracts in Western Australia. Once the contract is signed by both parties, it’s legally binding. We strongly recommend that you seek legal advice on the draft contract before you sign it. 

Most settlements proceed smoothly. But if there’s a problem, it’s good to know that we can advise you of your rights and tackle the difficulty on the spot. 

our services

How we can help you

Practical advice and solutions.

Express contract review consultation

$550

For advice on draft (unsigned) contracts, we offer a consultation at our office or by telephone or videoconference.

We can generally have your consultation within two business days of your booking.

Bookings must be made by telephone.

Please email the draft contract to us before your consultation: settlements@nullflatratesetts.com.au

Additional charges may apply for long or complex contracts.

Legal advice consultation

$385

For advice on signed contracts or legal issues during settlement, book a consultation with one of our property lawyers.

After the consultation, we will give you a written quote for any further service.

Unable to attend our office? We can conduct your consultation by telephone or video conference  – please contact us.

What to bring to the consultation:

  • your photo identification;
  • a copy of the contract and any other relevant documents.

Why choose us

We provide great service at competitive prices.
01.
Friendly and efficient service
We’ll anticipate your needs and exceed your expectations Read what our clients say.
02.
Excellent value for money

We charge a fixed fee plus disbursements at cost. 

03.
Industry game changers

Our flat rate pricing model has brought real competition to the industry. Chances are that wherever you go, thanks to us you’ll now be paying less.

Meet our team

We’re a law firm with more than 30 years’ experience in property law. As lawyers we can offer you so much more than a settlement agent. If there’s a problem with your settlement, it’s good to know that we, your settlement lawyers, can advise you of your rights and tackle the difficulty on the spot.

Legal Practitioner Director
Michael has been practising law in Western Australia since 1997 and is an experienced lawyer in property law, family law and succession law. Michael has a strong base of knowledge and experience from assisting hundreds of clients in these……
Legal Practitioner Director
Lucy is a talented lawyer, business administrator and manager who leads the development of the firm’s consumer legal services, bringing together people, technology and processes to design and deliver innovative legal services. Lucy supervises the firm’s Wills, probate, estate……
Settlements team leader
Laura’s dedication to the craft of real estate settlements, combined with her innate administrative and analytical talents, has seen her rise quickly to the ranks of an experienced and highly respected property conveyancer in Western Australia. Laura’s many clients……
Administration Manager
Chris joined the team in 2020 bringing with him an extensive background in business administration, customer service and systems administration. As well as overseeing the day-to-day operations of the office, Chris provides support to the different business units and……
Legal Executive
Mandy works in our Flat Rate Settlements department, assisting clients with real estate conveyancing.  Mandy’s keen eye for detail and an ability to keep calm under pressure has provided invaluable assistance to ensure successful and efficient settlements. Mandy joined……

FAQs

Most contracts to buy real estate in Western Australia are made by way of offer and acceptance on the standard two-page Contract for sale of land or strata title by offer and acceptance (O&A) published by the Real Estate Institute of Western Australia (REIWA) and the Law Society of Western Australia. The seemingly simple document incorporates the 2018 General Conditions set out in a separate 21-page booklet that is far more complicated. Both the O&A and the General Conditions are updated from time to time. If you’re buying or selling real estate, you need to understand both the O&A and the General Conditions – or have access to a professional who does.

The standard REIWA contract provides that if for any reason attributable to the other party, settlement is not completed within 3 business days after the settlement date, you may demand compensation at the rate of 9% per annum on the balance of the purchase price payable (penalty interest). Penalty interest is calculated from the settlement date to the date upon which settlement is completed and must be paid at settlement.

Your right to compensation is subject to you and your lender (if any) being ready, willing and able to complete settlement on the settlement date. If you are not ready, willing and able to settle on the settlement date, then your right to compensation begins from the date upon which you give written notice to the other party that you are ready, willing and able to complete the settlement.

We will only claim penalty interest on your behalf if we receive your written instructions to do so. We will advise you should there be any delay in settlement.

For more information, read out blog post Penalties for late settlement.

The Electricity Regulations 1947 (WA) require sellers of residential properties built after 1 January 2000 to install at least 2 residual current devices (RCD’s) in the premises before the sale is completed.

It is also compulsory that mains powered smoke alarms are installed in residential properties prior to sale.

Prior to settlement, the seller should provide the buyer with a certificate certifying that RCD’s and smoke alarms are installed in accordance with the Electricity (Licensing) Regulations 1991.

More information can be found at the Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety and at the Department of Fire & Emergency Services.

Unless stated in the contract, the property is sold free of all encumbrances. This means that, at settlement, any mortgages, caveats and other encumbrances must be discharged so that the buyer receives a clear title.

If there is a mortgage or other encumbrance on the title, the seller must contact the relevant financial institution or other persons and request that the encumbrance be removed at settlement.

The most common reason that settlement is delayed by a seller is that the discharging financier is not ready to settle. If settlement is delayed for this reason the seller may be liable to pay penalty interest to the buyer.

Transfer duty (formerly known as stamp duty) is a State Government tax calculated on the value of the property. You can calculate transfer duty using our settlement calculator.

The buyer is liable to pay transfer duty on the contract and transfer. You may be eligible for a reduced rate of transfer duty if you are a first home buyer or you are buying a residence for owner occupation.

You must lodge your contract at the Office of State Revenue for assessment within 2 months of the contract date. If you fail to do so you may be liable to pay a fine or late lodgement penalties.

Testimonials

What our clients say

Having used Flat Rate Settlements on 2 occasions in the past 3 months both engagements have been 5 star. Professional, informative and responsive to all queries is what made us go back the 2nd time and I will be sure they are first point of call in the future for further purchases or selling and if required legal advice. Highly recommend! Thank you to Laura and Chris.
Mr King
April 27, 2022
Thank you Laura for your professional services in settling the purchase of our “off the plan” parcel of residential land. I recommend Flat Rate Settlements. We chose you because we wanted to have seamless legal assistance should the process not go as planned. And we are thankful we did, because it ended up being a drawn out process that gave us cause for concern. Your communication and and professional advice eased our concerns. What’s more, your service was no more expensive than the many other Settlement Agents in Perth. I would use this service even for what might seem a straight forward settlement. The advantage is that should issues arise with the settlement, you have direct access to in house property lawyers, unlike the majority of settlement agents. It’s peace of mind at the right price. Thank you team.
Mr Pethick
April 1, 2022
For what appeared to be a seriously complex and intensive settlement, that had a total of 4 independent homes involved in the chain (2 of which were managed for me by Flat Rate Settlements), the company yet again made it turn out to be a totally fuss-free event for me. The end result was what mattered to me the most, which in effect was an accurate settlement transaction in which I sold one home to buy another. Mandy Truong from the firm, handled my settlement and she made it effortless for me, attending to every aspect of the transaction on time and super accurately. I have bought and sold homes on other occasions with the assistance of Flat Rate Settlements and I would be very comfortable in recommending them to anyone embarking on a real estate venture.
Mr Drew
March 31, 2022
Michael – Thank you very much for your help on this one. Really appreciate your efforts.
Mr D
March 8, 2022
Enjoyed our meeting today, many thanks Michael.
Ms King
February 23, 2022
We highly recommend Flat Rate Settlements. Chris was professional, efficient, and organised. He made us feel at ease with the sale of our home. This is the 5th time we have used Flat Rate Settlements and we will again in the future.
Ms Gaspar
January 13, 2022

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